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January

15. – La:Sadie's disbands.

Deathmask

Dir En Grey's very first show.

  • 24. – 長野 Live House J
    • In volume 65 of Shoxx (July 1998), Kaoru explains that "in Nagano, before [they] became Dir En Grey, [they] did a copy of a certain band and performed here for the first time with the current members." According to Band x Artist volume 3, they performed under the name DEATHMASK and played 黒夢 cover songs. According to an interview with Toshiya, they met on January 23 and on the next day, they booked two hours of studio time to practice. At the show, they played around four songs and Toshiya also performed with D+L.
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. Unknown 黒夢 cover.
2. Unknown 黒夢 cover.
3. Unknown 黒夢 cover.
4. Unknown 黒夢 cover.


February

02. – Kyo, Kaoru, Die, Toshiya and Shinya form Dir En Grey (stylised as Dir en grey). The exact date was provided in the magazine Dir en greyやろうぜ in 1999. The name is a combination of German "dir", French "en" and English "grey" and, according to an interview in Apres Guerre #19 (March 1997), was thought to mean "Grey Silver Coin" (灰色の銀貨 Haiiro no Ginka). It was supposed to convey a music and an image that wasn't caught by neither black or white, so they picked "grey".

Interestingly, there's a demo tape released in 1995 by the visual-kei band Lareine, one of the songs on that tape is called "Dir en gray". It opens with the line 灰色のあなたに dir en gray Haiiro no anata ni dir en gray, which both means "To you in gray" and would actually fit the intended meaning of the words, as opposed to "Grey Silver Coin". In the aforementioned interview, Kyo also mentions that he knew that phrase before, so Lareine's song is most likely the source for Dir en grey's band name. Why they thought that "dir" means "silver coin" remains unclear, but they would later become aware of their mistake.

In turn, Lareine got the name "Dir en gray" from a band called Dir & Gray, a visual-kei band that was active around 1991. The original meaning behind the name was "dill of grey colour" (dill is usually white) and was coined by guitarist SHOW. Interestingly, their name was written with the same Katakana as Dir En Grey, ディル・アン・グレイ, even though "and" would be written as アンド ando in Japanese.

According to an interview in Shellruby #1 (1998), the band had around 20 possible names and decided on "Dir En Grey" at a family restaurant. At first, Kyo and Toshiya didn't like it, they thought it sounded uncool and too similar to "GLAY". According to Toshiya on the radio show Nack5 FM Triangle Super Audition, one of the other names the members had in mind was "Kisaragi". It was taken from a high school band of Toshiya.

March

DirEnGrey1997

Dir En Grey in March 1997.

In March 1997, Dir En Grey joined their friends in 覇叉羅 on their tour. They also recorded their first demo tape, titled 業 / 蒼い月, at M4 Studio in Osaka.

JENOSIDE ZONE Vol.5

  • 31. – 名古屋 Club Quattro (secret show)
    • w/ 覇叉羅, WITH SEXY, STELLA MARIA, DELAY
    • At the end of the event, a session band with Toshiya on bass played "Get The Glory" by Laughin' Nose.
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
EN1. Get The Glory Laughin' Nose cover.
(Vo. ?, Gt. ?, Gt. ?, Ba. Toshiya, Dr. ?).


April

In April 1997, the tour with 覇叉羅 continued. Later, Dir En Grey performed a secret show at an event at 川崎 CLUB CITTA'. According to Kaoru in Shellruby #1 (1998), the band had created five or six songs on April 28.

JENOSIDE ZONE Vol.5

  • 01. – 難波 W'OHOL (secret show)
    • w/ 覇叉羅, STELLA MARIA, zɔ́ːdi̽æ̀k
Setlist unknown.
  • 04. – 博多 Logos' (secret show)
    • w/ 覇叉羅, deas':la, MISSING TEAR, VISAGE
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title
SE
1. 「S」
2.
3. Erode
4. 蒼い月
5. 秒「」深
  • 24. – 渋谷 ON AIR WEST (secret show)
    • w/ 覇叉羅, SPEED SLAVES, LAREINE, Kneuklid Romance
Setlist unknown.

クラブチッタ川崎主催イベント

  • 27. – 川崎 CLUB CITTA' (secret show)
    • w/ Jubilee, CHARISMA, DlociA, Flame
Setlist unknown.


May

In May 1997, Dir En Grey officially made their live debut. According to Kaoru in Shellruby #1 (1998), they recorded their debut EP MISSA in the first ten or so days of May and created four or five new songs until their debut live. According to Toshiya in the same magazine, they spent three nights in the studio.

16. & 17. – Dir En Grey has photoshoots for the MISSA booklet and the GARDEN music video.

30. – Kaoru appears on the radio show PowerRockRevolution. The 業 / 蒼い月 demo tape can be heard in the background. You can listen to the interview here.

HYPER MIX

  • 30. – 難波ROCKETS (secret show)
Setlist unknown.

結成記念ワンマン

  • 31. – 難波ROCKETS
    • First official show as Dir En Grey.
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. 霧と繭 Audio available here.
2. 「S」 Audio available here.
MC
3. 蒼い月 Audio available here.
4. 刹那 Audio available here.
5. Erode Audio available here.
6. 新曲1 Early version of 残-ZAN-.
Audio available here.
7. Audio available here.
8. 秒「」深 Audio available here.


June

In June 1997, Dir En Grey only played three shows, one of them a secret show at an event. At each of the other two shows, they distributed a special message tape.

NEO Behind the Mask

  • 13. – 目黒鹿鳴館 (secret show)
Setlist unknown.

ワンマン

  • 14. – 目黒鹿鳴館
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
SE Video partially available here.
1. 霧と繭 Video partially available here.
2.
3. 刹那
4. Erode
5. 蒼い月
語り Spoken-word performance of 惨劇の夜.
6. 「S」
7. 秒「」深 Video partially available here.
8. GARDEN
EN1. 新曲1 Early version of 残-ZAN-.
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. GARDEN
2. 刹那
3. Erode
4. 蒼い月
5. 「S」
6. 霧と繭
7. 秒「」深
8.
EN1. 新曲1 Early version of 残-ZAN-.


July

MissaAdd

An ad for the instore event on July 13.

In July 1997, Dir En Grey released their debut EP MISSA in Japan. They also appeared on various TV shows, at instore events and participated in the SHOCK WAVE'97 vol.2 tour.

03. – Instore Event at Osaka DEAD ONE.

04. – Instore Event at Kyoto JEUGIA Sanjo Main Store.

13. – Instore Event at Shinjuku LIKE AN EDISON.

18. – Instore Event at Shibuya INDIES HOUSE.

20. – Instore Event at Harajuku ROCK LOVE.

25. – Release of MISSA.

25. (earliest) – Kyo, Kaoru and Die appear on the TV show Jee Jee Trap. You can watch it here.

26. – Instore Event at Osaka JEEZ Shinsaibashi Store.

8ビート・ギャグ創刊記念ライブ SHOCK WAVE'97 vol.2

  • 26. – 難波 W'OHOL
Setlist unknown.

27. – Instore Event at Osaka Miyako Shinsaibashi Store M-Cube.

29. – Instore Event at Tokyo Shinseido Quartier 5 Shinjuku Store.

8ビート・ギャグ創刊記念ライブ SHOCK WAVE'97 vol.2

  • 31. – 川崎 CLUB CITTA'
    • w/ ピエロ, LAREINE, Plastic Tree, SHAZNA, SLUT BANKS
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
SE
1. 霧と繭
2. GARDEN Video available here.
MC
3. 秒「」深 Video available here.


August

01. – Kaoru and Toshiya appear on the radio show PowerRockRevolution. You can watch it here.

02. – Dir En Grey appears on the TV show ROCK STREET. It is unknown where and when the GARDEN performance was recorded. You can watch it here.

MISSALive

~MISSA発売記念LIVE~

  • 02. – 大阪 COWBOY WORLD
Setlist unknown.
  • 03. – 大阪 COWBOY WORLD
Setlist unknown.
  • 07. – 新宿 LOFT
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. 霧と繭
2. 「S」
3. Erode
4. 蒼い月
5. 新曲5 Early version of 藍紫色.
6. 刹那
7.
8. 秒「」深
EN1. GARDEN
  • 08. – 新宿 LOFT
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
SE
1. 「S」
2.
MC
3. 刹那
MC
4. Erode
5. 新曲2 Commonly known as Re:birth.
SE
6. 新曲3 Early version of mazohyst of decadence.
SE
7. 蒼い月
8. 霧と繭
9. 秒「」深
EN1. 新曲1 Early version of 残-ZAN-.
EN2. GARDEN
EN3.

10. – Instore Event at Shinjuku Teito Radio.

15. – Kyo, Kaoru and Die appear on the radio show PowerRockRevolution. You can watch it here

8ビート・ギャグ創刊記念ライブ SHOCK WAVE'97 vol.2

  • 21. – 市川 CLUB GIO
    • w/ ピエロ, LAREINE, Plastic Tree, SHAZNA, SLUT BANKS
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title
1. 「S」
2.
3. 秒「」深
4. GARDEN

Neo Behind the Mask

  • 23. – 上野水上野外音楽堂
Setlist unknown.

Behind the Mask

  • 27. – 川崎 CLUB CITTA'
    • w/ HAIL,SLAG-JAP, カナリヤ, Néil, 幻, Lucifer, ROSE, Angel・Dust, Orphee, Rave craft, LEMONADE, PARANOIA, SPEED SLAVES, La Valliere, 黒蝪蝶
Setlist unknown.

Dir en grey Presents MAZOHYST OF DECADENCE SHOW

  • 30. – 心斎橋 MUSE HALL
    • w/ STELLA MARIA, Lúcide, LAREINE
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. 新曲3 Early version of mazohyst of decadence.
2. 蒼い月
3. 「S」
4. GARDEN
5.
6. 秒「」深


September

In September 1997, Dir En Grey continued the tours they had begun a month earlier. They also played on the EXPERIENCE EYES'97 event. Most notable is the show on 15. September, one of the shows where they performed with and covers of other bands.

??. – Dir En Grey appears on the TV show Hot Wave. You can watch it here.

8ビート・ギャグ創刊記念ライブ SHOCK WAVE'97 vol.2

  • 01. – 難波 W'OHOL
    • w/ ピエロ, LAREINE, Plastic Tree, BLUE, 覇叉羅
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title
1. 蒼い月
2.
3. 秒「」深

Dir en grey Presents MAZOHYST OF DECADENCE SHOW

  • 07. – 名古屋 Heart Land
    • w/ STELLA MARIA, Lúcide
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. 新曲3 Early version of mazohyst of decadence.
2. 霧と繭
3. 「S」
4. 蒼い月
5. Erode
6.
7. 秒「」深
EN1. GARDEN
  • 14. – 目黒鹿鳴館
    • w/ STELLA MARIA, Lúcide, Tinker Bell
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. 新曲3 Early version of mazohyst of decadence.
2. 蒼い月
3 「S」
4. GARDEN
5.
6. 秒「」深
  • 15. – 目黒鹿鳴館
    • w/ special guest RISE OF INSANITY (覇叉羅)
    • After RISE OF INSANITY's set, the band shuffled their members and played two cover songs.
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
SE
1. 霧と繭
2. 刹那
MC
3. Erode
4. 「S」
MC
5. INSANITY 覇叉羅 cover.
MC
6.
7. GARDEN
EN1. 親愛なるDEATHMASK 黒夢 cover
(Vo. 京, Gt. Die, Gt. 舜 or SIN, Ba. LEAYA, Dr. K助).
EN2. X X Japan cover
(Vo. hideki, Gt. 薫, Gt. 舜 or SIN, Ba. Toshiya, Dr. Shinya).

EXPERIENCE EYES'97

  • 18. – 赤坂BLITZ
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
 ?. 霧と繭 Seen on TV.
Video available here.


October

MISSALive2

CRUCIFY OF MARIA ・・・TO “MISSA” あなたの『美的・発情・香』を呼び起こす

  • 28. – 渋谷 ON AIR WEST
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
SE
1. 霧と繭
2. 刹那
3. 新曲4 Early version of raison detre.
MC
4. Erode
5. 蒼い月
6. Dr.ソロ Drum solo.
7. Vo.ソロ Vocal solo.
SE
8. 新曲3 Early version of mazohyst of decadence.
9. 新曲5 Early version of 藍紫色.
10. 新曲2 Commonly known as Re:birth.
MC
11. Ash
12. 「S」
S. MC Unclear what the "S." means.
13.
14. 秒「」深
EN1. 新曲1 Early version of 残-ZAN-.
EN2. GARDEN
  • 30. – 心斎橋 MUSE HALL
⇵ Toggle Setlist ⇵
Title Notes
1. 秒「」深
2. 刹那
3. 新曲2 Commonly known as Re:birth.
4. 新曲4 Early version of raison detre.
5. 新曲3 Early version of mazohyst of decadence.
6. Ash
7. 「S」
8.
9. 新曲1 Early version of 残-ZAN-.
10. 霧と繭
11. GARDEN


November

??. – The band had a meeting in the morning and an interview in the afternoon. Later, Shinya and Kyo went to Toshima-en, an amusement park in Tokyo.

25. – Release of the omnibus album Behind the Mask vol.2 1997 -SOL'FINSTERRE-. Dir En Grey participates with Ash.

December

15. – Release of the mail-order version of 「楓」~if trans~ CRYSTAL VIDEO BOX.

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